Investors of Cryptocurrency Ignored 3 Straight Attacks 51% on ETC 0 983

Investors of Cryptocurrency Ignored 3 Straight Attacks 51% on ETC

Despite three “51% attacks” in a month, Ethereum Classic’s price has demonstrated strong resilience. Though down a bit for the past month, its persistence may indicate that security is not a top priority for investors rushing to join a bull run in the crypto market.

However, some warn that unless it improves its blockchain and makes it safer, additional attacks on Ethereum Classic could trigger a market sell-off and lead to a collapse of its digital asset.

For a blockchain network’s security, a “51% attack” is pretty much as bad as it gets. That’s when a single entity gains control of a majority of the network’s computing power, allowing it to siphon off extra units of the currency in what’s known as a double-spend.

So it would stand to reason that three successful 51% attacks in a month against the Ethereum Classic blockchain might dent investors’ confidence. But prices for the project’s native ETC token haven’t really taken a hit – a sign traders could be less concerned about security vulnerabilities than a quick profit in fast-moving cryptocurrency markets.

At press time, ethereum classic is trading at $5.06, down about 27% in the past 30 days at the same time bitcoin is off by 15%.

Three 51% Attacks in a Month

For the Ethereum Classic blockchain, 51% attacks have been a threat for a long time. Unlike Ethereum, from which it was hard forked, the Ethereum Classic network is committed to the Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus algorithm, which is also used by BItcoin. But for large networks like Bitcoin, a 51% attack is prohibitively expensive to do given the enormous amount of computational power required by PoW to successfully do it. Ethereum Classic’s hashrate is much smaller, making it far more vulnerable to 51% attacks.

By press time, the hashrate of Ethereum Classic stood at 1.668 terahash per second, while Bitcoin’s at 117.95 exashes per second, according to BitInfoCharts.

Ethereum Classic is the product of a hard fork after the Ethereum network split in different ways following an infamous hack in 2016. The PoW-based blockchain has been chasing after Ethereum, which now represents the No.2 cryptocurrency by market capitalization.

Ethereum is planning on changing its algorithm sometime next year. In a tweet thread Sept. 2, Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin argued Ethereum’s planned Proof-of-Stake (PoS) algorithm gives it a “key fundamental” advantage over PoW.

“In PoW, on the other hand, a successful attacker can just attack over and over again, with no possible way to delete their hardware without deleting everyone else’s hardware.”

During the month of August, the Ethereum Classic network suffered not one but three 51% attacks: the first one took place on Aug. 1, the second on Aug. 6 and a third on Aug. 29.

NiceHash, a hashpower broker, acknowledged its platform may have facilitated the recent 51% attacks, in a blog post on Sept. 1, but it also concluded that such attacks cannot be prevented or mitigated in a “truly decentralized proof-of-work solution.”

“The only thing one can do is make the price of an attack higher than the attacker reward,” the post added.

The Ethereum Classic network also suffered a 51% attack in early 2019, which led crypto exchange Coinbase to halt all ETC transactions, withdrawals and deposits at the time.

James Wo, founder of ETC Labs, the leading organization supporting the Ethereum Classic network, told CoinDesk via a spokesperson that his team has been trying to enhance the network’s security in the past year, including expanding the network’s core development team, and partnering with companies such as Chainlink, Swarm and Bloq.

The company announced two new hires on Sept. 3 to ETC’s core development team.

“These developments and partnerships are working to quickly propel the advancement of ETC and ensure a bright future for the network,” Wo said, who added that ETC’s price has held “strong” even with the recent 51% attacks.

Indeed, the attacks have not had any significant impact on its prices, which prompted a question: why would anyone put money in a token when its security is not guaranteed?

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IMF Says Russia and Iran May Use Crypto Mining for Monetizing Energy 0 60

The April 2022Global Financial Stability Report of the IMF has highlighted the consequences of the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. The document said that the role of the US dollar was bound to be affected because of the conflict, as it would lead to the introduction of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) and the global financial system’s resiliency would also be put to a test. The climate transition goals could also be put at risk because of the priorities associated with energy security. Another issue that would have to be dealt with in the coming years by lawmakers is the ‘cryptoization’ which is likely to occur because emerging markets are experiencing a widespread use of crypto.

IMF cited an increase in crypto trading volumes seen after the introduction of sanctions on Russia to back their statement. This included the financial penalties that had been imposed by Western nations on Russia because of its military invasion. The report said that such cross-border transactions were increasing in the long-term, which means that there would be challenges when it comes to imposing sanctions and managing capital flow. The IMF noted that crypto transactions have increased in both Russia and Ukraine because of the capital restrictions that have been imposed.

However, it is important to note that there has been a fall in liquidity in centralized exchanges where the hryvnia and ruble trading pairs are concerned. Therefore, using crypto exchanges for making large transfers has become rather impractical due to reduced liquidity. But, the IMF admitted that users do have the option of evading some measures via the crypto ecosystem because the identity verification requirements are quite lax in this industry. Hence, the international organization said that blocking new deposits of ruble and freezing crypto assets meant that users could have shifted to non-complying or less transparent crypto platforms and service providers.

Experts at IMF believe that both Russia and Iran could circumvent their respective sanctions via crypto mining. The nations could use their energy resources for generating revenue via crypto mining outside of the traditional financial system. Currently, the countries have a limited share of crypto mining activities, but there is a possibility that it could be increased, considering the size of the mining industry. The IMF quoted estimates showing that almost 11% of the mining revenues of bitcoin could have gone to Russia, which was around $1.4 billion per month, while Iran’s share had been 3%.

Bank of England Says Crypto Assets have Financial Stability Risks 0 100

On Thursday, the Financial Policy Committee of the Bank of England disclosed that they are working on developing a regulatory framework for digital assets. The central bank also made a reference to the sanctions that have been imposed because of the war between Russia and Ukraine in the statements. Bureaucrats and financial regulatory authorities all over the world have become increasingly concerned in recent times that Russia could take advantage of crypto assets to bypass the economic sanctions that have been imposed. The press statement of the BOE said that it was unlikely for crypto assets to provide Russia with a feasible way to get around sanctions at a large scale for now, but there was a possibility they could do so.

Therefore, it is a must to ensure that there are effective public policy frameworksthat can accompany innovation in crypto assets for maintaining the integrity and trust in the financial system. The crypto economy has been highly criticized by some members of the Bank of England for quite a while. Last year in mid-November, Andrew Bailey, the Governor of the Bank of England, had expressed his concerns about the adoption of bitcoin as legal tender in El Salvador. Sir Jon Cunliffe, the deputy governor for financial stability for the central bank, said in the following month that prices of crypto assets could drop to zero.

On Thursday, the report of the FPC talked about financial stability. The committee of the central bank noted that the FPC is assessing the risks to the financial system’s stability and it has concluded that these are currently limited. This is because their size remains limited for now and they are not that connected with the wider financial system. However, the FPC said that if they continue to grow at the same pace, and if they become interconnected with the overall financial system, then these crypto assets could pose a risk to the stability of the financial system.

Since the conflict between Russia and Ukraine began, politicians and lawmakers all over the globe have been discussing, developing, or even proposing laws aimed at regulating and researching digital currencies. The FPC’s statements on Thursday show that the BOE wants to classify crypto assets in the same category as it does traditional financial assets. Not only does the FPC plan on developing a regulatory framework that would govern digital assets, it has also mentioned stablecoins.

The FPC said that a major stablecoin that does not have a reliable deposit guarantee could turn out to be a risk to the UK’s financial system. According to the committee, if they introduce a systemic stablecoin, which is backed through a deposit mad with a commercial bank, it would result in significant risks to the stability of the financial system. All of this talk about crypto has been brought forward because of the Russian-Ukraine conflict and the possibility of the former using cryptocurrencies to evade the tough economic sanctions that have been imposed by Western nations due to its actions.

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